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Animalistic: people or animals?

+Although+there+are+many+animal+cruelty+cases+across+the+U.S.%2C+many+of+them+go+unreported.++Photograph+by+Jaylee+Cortes
 Although there are many animal cruelty cases across the U.S., many of them go unreported.  Photograph by Jaylee Cortes

Although there are many animal cruelty cases across the U.S., many of them go unreported. Photograph by Jaylee Cortes

Although there are many animal cruelty cases across the U.S., many of them go unreported. Photograph by Jaylee Cortes

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Imagine this: you are a mail inspector on the Mexican border with the job to search the packages and parcels that transit through and into Mexico from the U.S..  You normally search for contraband items like perishable food or chemicals, but on this particular day, your contraband dog finds something even more interestinga live tiger cub, dehydrated and shipped in a plastic container.

This particular instance occurred early in February.  The papers to ship the tiger were in order, but Mexican officials confiscated it because of its conditions.

It is just one of the many cases of animal neglect that happens across the world, where animals are mistreated for convenience or because of the lack of care of the humans around them.  

Many cases of animal cruelty occur in the U.S., and according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, around  250 thousand animals fall victim to hoarding annually. However, not many of these cases make it into common day-to-day discussion, and some who are convicted of animal cruelty are simply let off with a fine, such as Sade Francis, who was captured on video stomping on a dog in Houston on March 7 but was released on a $1000 bond, according to ABC 13.  

 

Most of animal cruelty cases are not even reported and are the result of people not knowing how to properly take care of livestock or their pets, leading to neglect.  Many people who abuse their pets do not even know it because they are unaware of their pets’ deprivation of food, water or shelter. Furthermore, organized animal cruelty such as dogfighting,  cockfighting or bullfighting are deeply embedded into cultural or political corruption, leading to less and less cases being served justice.

Some people believe that cases of animal cruelty are no problem.  After all, we need to eat animals for food, right? And humans should come before animals.  However, even with this mentality, animal abuse can often be a sign of deeper issues.

Researchers have found that cases of domestic violence often start with animal abuse, as stated by American Humane Society: “When animals in a home are abused or neglected, it is a warning sign that others in the household may not be safe. In addition, children who witness animal abuse are at a greater risk of becoming abusers themselves.”

Hoarding can also be a sign of deeper issues as many who do so have been diagnosed to have a mental illness.  According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, hoarding is considered a type of obsessive compulsive disorder, more commonly known as OCD.

April is the month for animal abuse awareness, and you can show your support of animal safety via fundraisers or online.  For more information, you can see the information from the ASPCA.

Do you think the penalty for animal cruelty should be changed?  Share your opinion in the comments below.

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Animalistic: people or animals?